tv [untitled] January 22, 2011 8:00pm-8:30pm PST
made the necessary arrangements to the kiosks and storage. in the event that parkwide wants to open additional cases, we will work with them to determine the appropriateness of the location and meet with the neighborhood's regarding the proposed concession, and prior to operating an additional location, the b.c. shall be required to obtain approval of the commission. i would like to just show you the locations of the kiosks. for jfk drive in golden gate park, this is the north side of john f. kennedy drive. you can see where the hours are. on saturdays, the left side, and on sundays, the right side, giving road closure. behind the band shell, you will see where the arrow is. that is where the kiosk will be, and storage will be off to the right in the right hand corner, where there are storage containers already for rpd use.
at union square plaza, you will see the errors in the upper left-hand corner of the picture, and the kiosk will be underneath, tucked behind the elevator. stores will be inside the garage. in marina green, storage will be where there is a bicycle rental kiosks already, and storage will be exactly where there are storage containers already on the right hand side. in justin herman plaza, you will see that -- down in the bottom in the middle, and storage will be off site. i would like to address safety parkwide concerns safety -- address safety concerns. parkwide has 30 years experience. the fisherman's wharf district had concerns originally, but they have been alleviated because they have had zero
bicycle-related insurance claims, and an excellent safety record in that area. all proposed locations are well served by bicycle lanes. each rider will be given a map with bicycle lanes highlighted. it will also all be given a helmet. baez's are accessible from the north, south, east, and west sides. there are numerous bicycle rental operations within a few blocks, all with excellent safety records. there have been zero incidents, in fact, with just those locations. that is two blocks away in the last 18 months of operation. our riders will be guided to the bicycle lane. they will be instructed not to ride their bikes across the plaza. you may have noticed that market street has undergone a comprehensive citywide program to become much more bicycle friendly. as i noted earlier, the the c shelf a minimum base rent of $127,400 per year with the greater of 5% increase. the total projected rent is
$1,081,049, and the projected a year total is approximately $2.5 million. projected rental the solid on the screen, that is the five- year break down. staff contacted the following groups and organizations prior to our -- prior to the commission meeting regarding the union square location. i will not read them all because i have lots of names. we contacted the following groups and organizations prior to the commission meeting regarding the marina green location. the following groups and organizations, regarding the commission meeting -- excuse me, prior to the commission meeting regarding the justin herman plaza location, and the following groups and organizations, regarding the golden gate park location. so we did quite a bit of our reach around this bicycle program, as you can see.
-- we did quite a bit of our reach. we had a meeting on november 10 that was attended by various stakeholders in the union square area, including members of the union square bid and mgm management. we attended the full union square bid meeting today. amongst others, the following individuals have expressed their support. the department, of course. san francisco bus of a coalition. the former chief of police for the city of sausalito, and the project manager for san francisco spend the street. wheelchair rentals and the san francisco bid are in opposition. next up, upon approval, the board of supervisors will consider the lease, and once approved, we work diligently to implement the least immediately. >> thank you.
that i ask commissioner levitan, as chair of the commission that heard this, to weigh in on this. >> while in theory, we are certainly in support of this contract, and we think it is wonderful to encourage by writing in the city, and obviously, we need the revenue, there were some concerns about safety related to union square. the consensus among members of the operation committee was that it is a highly dense area, and they are about to start construction on the underground subway there. just concerns about safety. we wanted to -- i know commissioner buell had talked about going to the site to do an inspection himself. we want to get feedback from union square merchants association, and we just wanted
to get a little more data, so that is why we are here today. >> thank you. commissioner lee: i walked by the area almost weekly, and i was wondering, with regard to the subway construction, the central subway construction is likely going to start. what impact does this have on the operation of the union square bicycle? you've got it running 7 days a week 9:00 to 5:00. how are you going to coordinate with the massive construction site like you're going to have in there? >> i think there is two components to my answer. the first being within the park. the central subway project, as it affects the park is going to be primarily affecting -- was at
the corner of geary and stockton. this is on the opposite side of the part, quite removed from that area, and it is a part of the park that will not be affected by the construction. the second aspect is how would -- obviously there is the central subway project, with impact stockton street itself with the line will be running underneath stockton. in developing the recommended amounts for all of the bicycle renters to access and leave and reacts as the park, part why it has recommended -- not recommended stockton has a street to access the part, to leave or to come back from the park. instead, ranchers will be instructed to go eastbound on post street on the dedicated by plane they're down to the embarcadero, and then to come back along the erie.
we think both within the park and also as people like to and from the park that there will be minimal impact. >> have you been in coordination with mta were guarding the expected traffic flow from the construction? clearly, if they close off part of stockton street, that traffic has to go somewhere. >> we have spoken with the mta about this, and they are confident that with the level of bike lanes there in the level of bike resources there, that this is an enterprise that can go one, yes. >> my concern is that that's where is such a relatively small area -- that square is such a relatively small area. the construction that is being described, and i've been hearing about the construction project for years now, and central subway. you know, i just -- i do not know if we are going to get the town of revenue that we think we are going to get when there is all this construction going on. who is going to want to ride
their bicycles around a construction site? the is the the kinds of questions that come into my mind. commissioner harrison: a couple of questions. i notice there is quite a few persons that you have reached out to, but just their organizations or their names. it does not say what their comments were. how many of, say the folks at the marina green that you contacted -- were they in favor or not in favor? there is not much said here. >> we contacted them that we were presenting the contract here at commission. the way we would know -- we did not receive e-mails opposed to the project, and there have not been any folks here at commission, and we have presented it quite a few times at this point. i would expect that we would have heard some feedback then
the folks had stormed off about it. >> they were contacted, but it does not say whether you received anything. >> we did not receive anything from the individuals that were contacted. >> another thing i am concerned about is the safety aspect of this. it is a small area. i'm somewhat familiar with it, and i'm concerned about pedestrian safety and access here as my colleague pointed out, pedestrian traffic is going to be rerouted, and is going to be a lot more people walking up and down. >> i would suggest that the operation has been going on for quite a long time down a fisherman's wharf. the writers have been given instructions in order to not have a collision with a pedestrian. i believe that they have sufficient experience operating a bike rental concession, so that this has not been an
incident that has happened. in fact, the only insurance claim they have received in the last 30 years was that a rider got bitten by the owner's dog. the only injury that resulted in an insurance claim. and i wanted to point out this is not just about riding around union square. it is about going to go in the park, pick up right across the city, and dropping off union square. starting at union square and transfers the city and drop it off. it is a wonderful way to see the city, not necessarily about circulating simply about union square. i imagine it will be more often used as a pick up or drop off place than a way to see that area, which is probably easier to see on foot. >> first, it did not bother me, and now, it is starting to bother me. when i look at these photographs, i see these container boxes, and we are starting to have more of them, and they are ugly.
>> the container boxes already exist. they have been there for a very long time. they are the same ones that are used for the bike rental that is their right now. the ones in golden gate park are actually rpd container boxes that are being repurchased. it is in an area behind the tour bus parking lot used as a maintenance storage area for us. they are actually renting space on the pier, and in union square plaza, it is going to be downstairs in the garage. there is really not too many storage containers that will be at it at all. >> i noticed in one of the pictures that justin herman, there is a vehicle struck with a trailer that can haul these back and forth. >> that is just to load and unload. that will not be on site. that is to bring it back and forth from the port so we do not have to have a storage container at the plaza. >> for me, that would be a
preferable alternative to having so many of these container boxes around. >> share -- sure. >> as we go on with this, we sat looking at this, we will start wanting more and more of these container boxes. our gardeners use them as toolsheds. they are not very sturdy. they give broken into a lot. we should start thinking about how to camouflage them or think about some alternative method of storage. the other thing i'm not happy with, and i may make a request to change is that five-year lease on this. i think it would be beneficial to have something less than that. two years, where they come back, sort of a trial, a shorter period of time. i would like to make a motion to reduce that number to something like two years. >> the only thing i would point
out is that there is a significant capital investment required by the concessionaire in order to put enough bicycles, and there will be time that is necessary to amortize that investment. i'm not sure what that time is, so i will let them speak to that. >> could you explore -- did you explore maybe taking it away from walking distance of union square, maybe doing it somewhere so it is away from construction, but still within walking distance of the square? them a living the concession itself away? we do not have -- >> moving it away? we do not have jurisdiction to hear the closest property we own is the plaza, and we are adding it there. >> can you tell me -- the other thing, as i'm listening to my
commissioners talk about the union square area, that is significantly different than the other locations, the fact that you have a high concentration of stores and foot traffic around -- in all four corners of the facility, whereas with the fisherman's wharf area and so forth, there is more -- it is more of a straightaway, and there's more maneuverability, i would say, for a bicyclist. my concern is the the bicycle traffic does not end up on the sidewalk or and impeding shoppers, and bicycles are being parked on the sidewalks as the bicyclist go in to look at the shop, perhaps, or improv to window shop, whether that would affect the flow of foot traffic in that very dense neighborhood,
and so forth. that is where i'm having an issue. i could see golden gate park, marina green. those all make very good sense in terms of locations, but just this one in particular, union square, and having a little difficulty with. >> again, the users will be given a map with bike lanes highlighted and strongly encourage to say on those bike lanes. there are lanes that exit the square on all four quarters, and they will be guided specifically to the post street lane to exit the union square area, so that will be very much part of their instruction. >> i understand that, but there is a lot of attractions. you could envision a bicyclist deciding to pop in for water or to window shop or some kind of attraction. that is the concern. people would deviate. because you will not be with the
monitoring device it lists all the time. you have a long hours of operation. you are essentially setting people up there with bicycles. >> sure. i cannot speak for every user, but i imagine folks did think they were going to be with a shopping, they might not choose a bicycle as a mode of transportation. >> they might stop in to get a drink or something like that. anyway. >> let me weigh in on this for a minute because i had some of the same concerns. so i went down to see the site. on a positive aspect, i thought that there was no large storage. it is going to be done in the garage. that was my first concern. it is a very discreet location that does not seem to interrupt pedestrian traffic. my second concern is the one voice here today, and that is about safety and congestion down
there, but i was given assurance that they would be guided out to post street to the bike lanes, so they are going to get position to get out, and they will be given a map that will be on the bicycle to come back in on the theory side -- geary side. there probably will be problems during that construction, but i imagine there will be some serious pedestrian issues there as well. construction people are going to have to figure out how to deal with that. i do not know that we can do anything about that. i share commissioner harrison's concern about the use of these storage facilities, particularly at golden gate park. i think they are unattractive, and it resonates with me every time catherine howard says we need a plan for behind the band shell. we cannot keep adding container facilities to solve our revenue enhancement issues, so i'm going to repeat to the staff that i think we need to address an
issue of some kind of plan and whether it is going to be a capital improvement for some relocation. i think that is a tough issue to put container storage facilities there now. having said all of that, wearing a different hat, i saw a presentation about doing some more on the golden gate bridge, and they showed some containers structures that have been built out of containers, and they were pretty attractive, so there may be some solution here on containers. i tend to think we ought to go in the direction of some permanent facilities to accommodate the growth of vendor operations in that area in golden gate park or something. going back to the issue, though, of the safety issue, i'm also inclined to think that these folks have to carry certain insurance policies to have contracts with us. if the insurance companies are not as concerned about the
safety issues, they are the ones concerned with the bottom line. that gives me some greater level of comfort. i walked up to the area that they would be guided on to the bite. it might not be my favorite place to ride a bike in town, but i'm not going to use my value system against tourists and visitors. i think it will make that determination. having said that, while i think there will be capital improvements that need to be made and amortized over five years, as it relates to union square, i would like the staff to get back to the commission with a report within six months of the operation to give people hands-on experience. god forbid there are any accidents, but if there's a problem, we would like to know about it, so i would like to
recommend as a motion that we move forward on this with the idea that there be a six-month report back to the commission. and that we begin to make progress on the storage facility. there will be public comment. i'm weighing in on where i see us going on this. with that, maybe we should not go to public comment. -- maybe we should go to public comment. >> [reading names] >> i've been chomping at the bit to get up here. commissioner lee, you ask the right question. what is going on with central subway? i have the traffic diversion plan. you can see union square right in the middle. stockton street is going to -- by the way, the construction
will probably commence within two weeks. it will be 18 months long for the first phase. that is utility relocation. during that time, all traffic headed south on stockton is going to be diverted. if you are going west, you will get shunted over on sutter down to mason. there will be no private vehicular traffic allowed on stockton street the low post. only muni, tour buses, taxis, and delivery trucks will be allowed down there. there will be four full-time construction crews working, two on stockton street. one on ellis. one on geary. every bit of that area is going to be a mess. our problem is going to be trying to figure out how to make the public understand that they
cannot get down there. i would like you to think about standing on the southwest corner of the square. you are at the geary and powell. have you been down there? have you seen the tour buses? they turn right on to call. they turn right on to post. at post and powell, you have buses crossing, coming there. you have a right hand turn lane for people getting into the garage. you have cross traffic going across one way and another, and when you do not have cars, you've got pedestrians. we see to a brand new board today. 23 members. they were unanimous saying this is nuts. three of our officers are avid bicyclist.
all three of them have bicycled in the city and in europe. they think it is a disaster waiting to happen. we would be in favor of -- you could have a kiosk location there, launch the bicycles from another site. perhaps holiday plaza. we are not against cycling, trust me. blazing saddles runs a nice clean operation on mason street, but they have to contend with the kiosk. over the next 10 months, the other thing the construction team is going to be doing is beginning to reroute muni. we have a 58-month project when
they come in to do the part of construction that nicholas manchin, and that is the southeast corner of the square. it is going to be rerouted over to stockton, down to mason. things are going to be very difficult, and they are challenging would be the way i would put it. our board just preceded today. we could not take formal action on the matter until today, or we would have been more public. those members all either own properties or run businesses right around that area in the 27 blocks that we serve. the last time i was before you was when i was c-chairing with engine chapel of the citizens of buys a committee. we had a beautiful, private,
nonprofit, public partnership. we had a square that was far more activated. everyone enjoys it. i would say let's keep going in that direction. we do have some serious concerns about what will be going on. >> can i ask you a question? what exactly is the catastrophe you see happening? i think there will be congestion. >> i really think that the traffic -- fishermans wharf certainly is congested, but you have a different kind of traffic. you've largely got visitors who are driving who are looking, who are probably moving slower than traffic that is crossing through union square. our risk is that someone will get really harmed on a bike in that area. you say the operator is going to carry insurance. you are also going to get sued
as having allowed the operation to be there. >> i think that as part of the business plan. if anything on any of our parks happens, we suffer that liability. thank you. >> can i see that map that you were showing us? >> keep going. >> robert burke. >> good afternoon, commissioners. thank you for letting me speak. i do represent golden gate national recreation area, and we do really applaud healthy bicycle riding in the park. we just think it is a wonderful thing. we have a couple of questions, though, that i guess i could turn into comments. i do not know if questions are allowed. this has just been handed to me recently. our main concern right now is in the area of the upper and lower fort mason. while the parties mentioned
that may be awarded this contract, they do have a very good track record. they are responsible an amiable. one of our main concerns is we do not really know how much traffic will be increased. we are concerned about resourced protection and visitor enjoyment. without knowing how much increase of traffic will have on bicycles, we do not know how much our pedestrian traffic will be impacted. we wanted to get a better feel of this before we can fully buy in on it ourselves. i think your comment also on the container storage is very good. that was mentioned by our park as well as being fairly unsightly. i just wanted to agree with that. other than that, i'm just looking forward to a good working and healthy relationship to hopefully move this thing forward.
thank you. [reading names -- >> [reading names] >> i was the one that was instrumental in creating a community benefit district in union square. this is the worst possible site that you could put bicycles in. aside from the fact that you are having a subway built there. it is crazy. take the promenade just in herman plaza. you cannot walk through now. it is awful. that is why i'm trying to form a community benefit district there to bring some control. it is out of control, this whole city, and you have to use discretion as to where you put these. these little parks are not golden gate park. you cannot compare the two. you have to use serious discussion on where you are discussion on where you are putting these.